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Photoshop is one of the world’s most powerful image editors, and it can be daunting to try to use skillfully. Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Advanced, the second part of the popular and comprehensive series, follows internationally renowned Photoshop guru Deke McClelland as he dives into the workings of Photoshop. He explores such digital-age wonders as the Levels and Curves commands, edge-detection filters, advanced compositing techniques, vector-based text, the Liquify filter, and Camera Raw. Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details, smoothing over wrinkles and imperfections, and enhancing colors without harming the original image. Exercise files accompany the course.
Recommended prerequisite: Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts and color settings for Photoshop from the Exercise Files tab.
All right friends, this is the finished version of Maddalena here inside of the Liquify plug-in and I have made a few modifications since last we spoke but just using the exact same tools I discussed before. So Warp, Pucker, Bloat and the Masking tools are really all you need to get the work done 99.9% of the time. All right, so it's tempting now at this point to just go up here and Click on the OK button in order to apply our settings and that's what we do with just about any filter. This filter, I never ever, ever want you to work that way. I have learned this the hard way. I have got stung several times by this and I do not want you to ever have this problem.
Here is what happens and it happens a lot. You Click OK, the image is modified there inside Photoshop. You go get a cup of coffee, you come back, you look at what you have done and you discover a mistake and you think oh, the land is sloping at a weird angle or this tree is all wiggly or something along those lines. So you can see something that you moved over that you didn't mean to move and you go, ahh and you press Ctrl +Z, Command+Z on the Mac and then you choose the Liquify command again and you think there is some way to reinstate your last settings but there is not. There is no way to automatically reinstate the mesh. You can reinstate the numerical settings for all that matters but it's the mesh that can't. I'll go ahead and turn on the Show Mesh checkbox.
This mesh is what's conveying everything about your distortion. Fortunately, you can save it, but you have to do so manually. You have to specifically save your mesh if you are going to bring it back and I recommend you do that every single time, never just Click OK, always Click Save Mesh first and then OK second. That's what I want you to do. So I'm going to turn off the Show Mesh checkbox. I'm going to go up to the Save Mesh button, Click on it and then I'm here inside my 20_warp_liquify folder. You can see that I have saved off a couple of other Maddalena settings in the past. I will go ahead and Click on one of these just so I can lift its name and I'll change this to Maddalena settings-3 and Click Save. Now then, if I Click OK, I'm safe, right? So this is the after version of Maddalena. She is looking pretty darn good and this is the before version. Oh, looking great and now, I'll press Ctrl+Z or Command+Z again in order to reinstate the settings and I look and I see some problem.
Now, I'll press Ctrl+Z, Command+Z on the Mac. Go up to the Filter menu, choose Liquify, bring up the Liquify dialog box again. Reinstate my settings? No, of course I can't do that, no way, no reinstate last mesh option. Go here to Load Mesh and then load your settings. You know what? I'm going to try Maddalena settings-1.msh which is some settings I did a couple of years ago I think, Click OK and all right, that's interesting. She is a little bit skinny in places and look at that landscape. That's the kind of thing you need to watch out for with this filter that you are so focused on the foreground and the subject of the photograph that you miss the background just completely belying the fact that you have been inside Liquify.
Fairly experienced Photoshop users can look at this image and know right away that I had been added inside Liquify Filter because of this weird distortion in the background and a few other things. All right, so let's try something else, Load Mesh, I'll Click on Maddalena settings-2.msh there, open it up, it's kind of lumpy in places actually. Don't like her so much. All right, Click Load Mesh and Click on Maddalena settings-3.msh and Click Open, much better. And this hair, I'm not very fond of the way the hair is kind of splitting in part but there is not much I can do about that because were I to try to reconstruct this area, I'll go ahead and grab this Reconstruct tool here and increase the size of my cursor.
If I were to go ahead and reconstruct this area, you would see that, that used to be that big old shoulder blade that was kind of just in decline there, that big boneless shoulder. So I'll go ahead and press Ctrl+Z, Command+Z on the Mac to undo that, but let's say, I made a change. Then I would go up here and Click Save Mesh and I just save over the other one because there was such a minor change and then Click Save and Click Yes and then of course, Click OK and we are done people. That is the final liquefied version of the image, before and after.
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